David Cameron vows to boost infrastructure projects

David Cameron The prime minister says there is cause for optimism over the economy

David Cameron has promised an "all-out mission" to kick-start infrastructure projects and revive the economy.

Writing in the Financial Times, the PM said he had given the go-ahead for two power plants in Yorkshire that would create 1,000 construction jobs.

Meanwhile, his deputy Nick Clegg announced which firms in England would benefit from the £950m final instalment of the regional growth fund.

Labour says neither announcement represents new investment.

Mr Cameron admitted in the Financial Times that the eurozone crisis was having a "chilling effect" on global growth and he warned there were "no short-cuts to success".

Broadband jobs

But he urged people to be optimistic, pointing to growing trade with India and China, and warned that pessimism and fear "can become self-fulfilling prophecies".

Mr Cameron spelled out a three-point plan based on confronting Britain's debts, improving competitiveness and building global trade.

Start Quote

This does not amount to the significant plan for jobs and growth Britain's economy desperately needs right now”

End Quote Chuka Umunna Shadow Business Secretary

"I am confident that we can both resolve the crises at hand and come through them with an economy that is stronger and fundamentally fairer," he wrote.

As well as approving power plants at Ferrybridge, West Yorkshire, and Thorpe Marsh, near Doncaster, Mr Cameron welcomed news that BT will complete its roll-out of superfast broadband by 2014 - generating work for 500 more engineers.

He said more infrastructure announcements could be expected over the coming months.

Meanwhile, Mr Clegg says the remainder of the £1.4bn regional growth fund cash will help create or safeguard "hundreds of thousands of jobs".

He told BBC Radio 4's Today that every pound of government money given to companies would bring £6 of private sector investment "providing more bang for your buck".

Ed Miliband: "The government's plans are too little, too late, because we've got a perfect storm in our economy"

Mr Clegg said the coalition government was seeking to "rewire the British economy" and cut the past "over-reliance of firms on decision makers in Whitehall".

In a written statement to Parliament, Business Secretary Vince Cable said there had been 492 bids for £3.3bn funding. A panel chaired by Lord Heseltine helped decide on the 119 successful bids for the £950m available.

Shadow Business Secretary Chuka Umunna accused the prime minister of being "out of touch" and said the government was failing to address a lack of economic growth.

He said the "long-delayed funding" represented a two-thirds cut, with one year's budget of the scrapped regional development agencies being paid out over three years.

"Power stations already in the pipeline are finally being given the green light, but no investment is actually being brought forward," he said.

"This does not amount to the significant plan for jobs and growth Britain's economy desperately needs right now."


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  • rate this

    Comment number 77.

    Infrastructure and environment is where the cash should go. . .railways, but not including HS2, with the manufacture of rolling stock in UK, power generation and a re-establishment of our own nuclear industry. . . investment in high technology that is not solely defence oriented. . . real, not phoney, recycling of all waste products. . . .

  • rate this

    Comment number 76.

    Why cancel the A14 upgrade then? That was an extremely important infrastructure project linking Britain's busiest container port (Felixstowe) with the rest of the nation.

  • rate this

    Comment number 75.

    He can make a start by sacking the idiots that ordered trains from Germany.

  • rate this

    Comment number 74.

    This stimulus is well overdue and I look forward to hearing the helicopters full of cash flying overhead.

    We do need to ensure that it is used properly, though, as opposed to the fiascos of Scottish Parliament, Edinburgh tram and Jubilee line extension. This is one where consensus is needed: public and private sectors in partnership.

  • rate this

    Comment number 73.

    Better late than never, the cost & limitation of windpower (+300m/yr and its 30% availability, No fridge, TV. Lights for an average of 7 out of every 10 days, with minimal CO2 reductions), is now widely appreciated. Time then for the construction of 10 new 1500MW PWR power stations asap, thus providing jobs & a secure reliable independent 24/7 source of CO2 free energy for the UK.

  • rate this

    Comment number 72.

    It seems to me that until further notice, all UK projects MUST be awarded to UK companies.

  • rate this

    Comment number 71.

    I am all for a reduction in VAT to 17%.

    Hands up who thinks all of this will be handed to the consumer?

    Who thinks VAT reduction will just get absorbed in a price INCREASE?

    Hhmm so prices will stay where they are or even go UP and the government will need to raise taxes from elsewhere to balance figures.

    Braking Too hard Too fast is DANGEROUS as we mow see!
    You were warned MR Cameron!

  • rate this

    Comment number 70.

    Cameron is an idiot. His government just destroyed 20,000 jobs or more by halving the feed in tariff for solar panels. No one will do them now. This boosted work all over the land yet stupid infrastructure is a few jobs in one place to his developer friend's profit.

  • rate this

    Comment number 69.


    At least DC stood as party leader at a General election and his party won the most seats. GB was gifted his position as PM out of a sense of entitlement!

  • rate this

    Comment number 68.

    warned that pessimism and fear "can become a self falfilling prophecy" spoken like a multi-millioaire. "resolve crises at hand and come through with economy that is stronger and fundamentally FAIRER" oh good we can all look forward to 50% pay Rises!!! Yeah ok, "I don't think so"

  • rate this

    Comment number 67.

    Well done the CON/DEMS you've just consigned those of the same ilk north of Hadrians wall towards extinction with this investment news in england, even with a re-branding for the CON partnership in ecosse ........PS Will you employ positive discrimination for the hiring of indigenous brits or does the EU not permit such a thing?

  • rate this

    Comment number 66.

    More verbal diarrhoea from Cameron. What happened to the Big Society. This is a weekly promise of "I am so good"

  • rate this

    Comment number 65.

    This is good news and the rise in employment prospects will not be confined to building contractors. There will be lots of job opportunies for professionals who will be required to support the many immigrant groups coming here for the jobs. They will require, teachers of English, community workers, and on and on.

  • rate this

    Comment number 64.

    It's worrying. It took WW2 and British wealth to get the countries of the USA out of depression. Do not know how effective the new deal really was. the Government has to re-instate the loan for Sheffield Forgemasters. This was a mistake of massive proportions, but can be reversed.

  • rate this

    Comment number 63.

    52.Trainee Anarchist
    I attended a seminar on monitoring new nuclear power stations and unfortunately the experts are either French or East Europeans. The UK experts were all long in the tooth and all stated that there were no “youngsters” replacing them.
    Unfortunately you could say this for a lot of UK industries also.

  • rate this

    Comment number 62.

    Only 12 months later than needed.
    The real question is how much of this money will be spent on endless committees deciding to review previous committee decisions, only to appoint other comittees to decide how best to review the previous committees programme for non delivery.

    This money will achieve nothing

  • rate this

    Comment number 61.

    @27.Ex Tory Voter

    I would rather have a Tory in power than Tony Blair to give ANY advice.

    He had the people in his hand and the mandate return this country to affluence.
    Instead he took us to (an illegal) war and allowed his chancellor smash the fiscal infrastructure of the UK.
    Catholics can not hold PM Office. He remained CofE until his resignation;then converted for a new job: his OWN church!

  • rate this

    Comment number 60.

    Power stations, railways, wind farms etc.

    The NIMBYS will be out in force !

  • rate this

    Comment number 59.

    It is welcome news but how many of these jobs will actually go to British workers? We have one million young people in this country who are in desperate need of a job.

  • rate this

    Comment number 58.

    So Cameron has come out with some more soundbites for his adoring followers???

    Where's the news story in this?


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